Tuesday, 31 October 2017

The Mute and Unfollow Buttons: Why They Can Be Your Best Friends

The internet is a wonderful thing. We are one google search away from knowing the worlds secrets, organising a wedding, or a birthday party, without having to leave our beds. We can connect with people from all over the world and from all walks of life, and I have no doubt it has helped us all with personal growth, to understand each other and see beyond our own little bubble. I'm even old enough to remember having to, *gasp*, pick up the phone and talk to someone if I wanted to do something like order a pizza!

It's a life changing tool, particularly if you do something as a career or a hobby, where connecting with people is the ultimately goal. It can sometimes feel like there are no limitations or bad points about being connected to people all the time.
Dress: V by Very (no longer available)
Sandals: Dorothy Perkins (no longer available)
Sunglasses: Spitalfields Market

The thing is, there is always a downside to anything. No matter how good something can be, there will always be moments that make you feel less than joyful. There are so many facets to social media and we tend to find ourselves on Twitter and Instagram more than any other, and again, they are great for meeting virtual people and making virtual friends, or just admiring from afar (which is what I tend to do. Hello introvert with anxiety issues!). I remember a time without these apps but I genuinely feel like I know more about myself and have gained a lot from my interactions with people with these apps, so why would I be talking about using the mute/ unfollow buttons?

Sanity.

I'm not kidding. We want to consume everything we see, comment on everything people say, argue with everyone with a difference of opinion, and want to vehemently agree with a tweet or picture that resonates with us; but the problem that arises with that is we can often feel like our brains are so full they're fit to burst.

We can't engage with everything we see. It's just not feasible, nor is it healthy. If you're like me and like to be culturally and politically aware, the world is an ever evolving shit-storm with very little to ease the anger and frustration, so because of this, sometimes a mute or even an unfollow can do the world of good for our mental health. Filtering depending on how we're feeling is so important because there is so much triggering material all over our feeds and we're not machines; we can't choose what to be affected by and when, so filtering people out is a great way to maintain ones sanity without fulling deleting every virtual person from our lives.
From my world, the blogger world, it's so easy to get sucked into someones online life. Comparison is easy and feeling inadequate even easier, so it's totally OK to mute someone who triggers something negative in you - you may even be a fan of theirs or like a lot of what they say, but if you feel like their output is doing you more harm than good please look after yourself and hit the mute or unfollow button. I personally did this recently with someone whom in theory, I actually liked a lot of what they were saying, but the deliverance and frequency of it just became too much - the mute button was hit and I have genuinely felt so much better since then. My mind actually feels clearer and I'm able to look at my Twitter feed without fearing what the next 'big issue' will be. It's cathartic and doesn't make you a bad person. It simply makes you someone who puts your own mental health above reading a 30-tweet rant.

So the next time you feel exasperated by someones feed, don't be shy, hit that mute button at the very least. You'll feel so much better.

 'til next time!


Love and hugs,
Isha xxx

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Living My Best 'Boring' Life

I was talking to a work colleague the other day about what I did last New Years Eve. I ordered a pizza, watched The Revenant, drank a entire bottle of Prosecco all to myself, and was in bed by the time the last chime struck at midnight. Now to most people, this would seem like the lamest thing in the world. Didn't I want to be out? Didn't I want company? Didn't I feel like I was wasting what should have been a social extravaganza of an evening? Well, the answer to all was no.
Pinafore Denim Dress: Lost Ink for Very (limited sizes available)
Cardigan: Marks and Spencer 
Sandals: Dorothy Perkins (no longer available)
Sunglasses: Spitalfields Market
You see, I've never been a sufferer of F.O.M.O (fear of missing out). I've never felt the pressure to be doing something my counterparts were doing merely so I could "relate". I don't know if it's because I've always been in my own head and have always enjoyed my own company, but I have often looked on in bemusement seeing people scramble for plans of any kind just so they could say they had something to do. Maybe I'm just too independent and refuse to conform, because I clearly don't 'get it', this need to have an exciting life, because to me, my life is exciting. Last week was a super busy one for me where I was out every night, including Saturday. Don't get me wrong, I love my friends more than anything and had the best time hanging out, eating dinners, drinking cocktails and wine, and talking into the early hours, but I cannot tell you how happy I was to throw on some lounge wear and bum around my flat all of Sunday. I literally didn't leave the flat. It was glorious!

People have made reference to me having an old soul and I think there's something in that. I'm definitely a home-body who loves to sit on the sofa and binge watch a show on Netflix, and as much as I enjoy having company when I choose to, being on my own is just as blissful. Not having plans and having a potter around a market or park is one of my favourite things to do, but in this day and age we are so programmed to have a pretense of busy. We need others to feel like they need to make an appointment well in advance in order to see us because heaven forbid, we agree to meet someone on the same day they text or call for a hangout. We need to refer to our calendars and stroke our chins as we determine when we might have a free slot for someone we hold dear, and if we don't have anything in our calendar we feel like we are wasting our best years. The pressure to compete is so rife in this digital age; IG, Snapchat, Facebook and the like, have made us seek out more for ourselves even if we don't want it.
It's important to remember that the world and our lives are so fast paced, that we need to log out and actually enjoy a free afternoon or evening. If that means sitting in a coffee shop and watching the world go by, so be it; if it means sitting on our bums watching yet another episode of Friends, great; if it means reading for half an hour, enjoy getting lost in another world. We need to take a step back and allow ourselves to breathe. The world isn't going to stop turning if we don't spend an obscene amount of money in a wine bar on a Saturday night.

So no, I have no idea what I'll be doing this weekend, but I can guarantee you it'll be exactly what I want to do.

'til next time!


Love and hugs,
Isha xxx